The Bears may have sacked quarterback Matthew Stafford twice in Sunday’s 37-34 overtime loss to the Detroit Lions, but their relative lack of a pass rush was the biggest factor in the defeat.
The Bears’ secondary struggled, to be sure — and I’ll have a piece on that later — but several of Stafford’s passes came three, four or even five seconds into the play, and you can’t expect cornerbacks to stay with their coverage for that long in this league. The receivers are just too good.
Outside linebacker Pernell McPhee, who has been playing out of his mind this season, had one of the two sacks on a dominant bull rush in overtime. I’d like to know why it took him that long in the game to get to Stafford, though. The Lions are weak on the edges of the offensive line and the Bears failed to take advantage. Rookie nose tackle Eddie Goldman and defensive end Jarvis Jenkins also split a sack in the first quarter.
I will say, in fairness to the defense, that they did force Stafford off his spot many times — which is half the battle of the pass rush — but just couldn’t close the deal and bring him to the ground.